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  #16  
Old 10-21-2017, 05:46 AM
philjs philjs is online now
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Originally Posted by Carbonius View Post
That's a good idea. I forgot that the string doesn't have to be in a straight line all the way from the tuner the saddle. I'm very new to the harp guitar realm but I've certainly seen many of them that have a post to the left of the tuner.

Since the Timberline wasn't designed to have posts, Would the harp side headstock be able to handle that much lateral pressure? I don't know how many pounds of tension are on a harp string, but I would be concerned about splitting the headstock if the post has a lot of pressure on it. I see the prototype Timberline that Jamie is playing in the video I linked does have the string at quite an angle around the post. However there also seems to be some buildup of wood in that area. Definitely need the expertise of a good luthier on the installation.
I'm new to the harp guitar, too, but have lots of experience with harps (my wife is a harper). The basic thing to know is that ALL sharping levers need a nut post, otherwise the lever will just push the string down the tuner. The post itself is literally just a nut so there is no pressure involved. If the head is solid wood then it's just a 3mm (1/8") or so diameter screw-in hex post with a groove near the top.

In the harp photo below the tuners are at the top with the string wound around them (harps traditionally use a tapered fit tuning pin), the nut pins are between the tuners and the sharping lever. The nut pins have a groove that keeps the string from "traveling" up and down the tuner when the lever forces the string up or down.



So the nut pin literally acts as a nut, meaning that the scale length of the string is from the saddle to the nut pin, not to the tuner. The sharping lever is pretty much a moveable "fret" that is critically placed to shorten the scale length of the string (which is why they have slots for mounting) to the desired pitch AND provides a solid connection to the string so the string sustain is not impeded. Note, too, how close the pins and the lever are to the tuners in the photo...

Hope this helps, eh? (<-- blatant Canadianism only understood by other Canadians)

Phil
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  #17  
Old 10-21-2017, 10:59 AM
Carbonius Carbonius is offline
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Thanks for that detailed explanation Phil. Sorry I didn't get it at first. Sorry that I put up some really long posts. Sorry for... I just displayed another canadianism there. Overly apologizing for no apparent reason!

I think my only concern with the Timberline Harp guitar is the 24.9 scale length. I tend to run a 56 E string on a 25.5 scale length (light top medium bottom) so I'm a little concerned. However I really like how short scales sweetens up the treble strings and warm up the tone overall. From what I can tell every Timberline instrument has a 24.9 scale length so it's just what they do. That being said, they should have the experience to get the most out of a short scale guitar.

All in all it's a very exciting time in the harp guitar world. We've got Emerald and Tonedevil offering production instruments at a good price. Now Timberline brings in some great minds to in the design and offers a production harp guitar at less than the price of the competition! Good times!

Speaking of production harp guitars whatever happened to Holloway? It seems like there was a lot of talk about them a few years back and then it just stopped. None for sale anywhere other then the rare used one.
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  #18  
Old 10-21-2017, 12:13 PM
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On the other end of the price scale... This is really interesting, a 21-string harp guitar with fan frets, and sharpening levers on both the bass and treble harp strings!


https://www.ebay.com/itm/Pellerin-21...g/152439882501
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  #19  
Old 10-21-2017, 12:42 PM
Gregg Miner Gregg Miner is offline
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Originally Posted by Carbonius View Post

Since the Timberline wasn't designed to have posts, Would the harp side headstock be able to handle that much lateral pressure?
Ours probably has one of the more robust sub heads out there, I wouldn't worry about that.
Re sharping lever projects: Here's a reveal that I don't think has ever been publicly discussed: There is no standardization in direction of geared sub tuners. Since they are perpendicular to neck, neither direction (to raise or lower pitch) feels "right" or "wrong" - they're both arbitrary. To save on hardware costs, some builders who use 6-string sets end up with every other harp guitar's subs going in one direction, then the other (no one has noticed this or complained about it to my knowledge).
Our design had me sweating tuner placement and then knob rotation direction like crazy...until I realized that, without nut posts installed (btw, the coming-off-the-tuner shaft design was my own idea over a decade ago with one of my old Knutsens), the string could come of either side of the shaft, and the tuners thus rotated in the direction that "feels right" to the player. Simple. The 3/16" difference left<>right change at the head is imperceptible to one's right- or thumb-wrapping left-hand thumbs. I probably won't advertise this fact or "option" as it's probably TMI and much too confusing for the Newbie.
I mention this only for you sharper-obsessed shoppers who might use this to your advantage if/when attempting adding them down the road. Bass tuners on half of my Knutsens don't rotate in the same direction, which one gets used to...or tuners could be swapped with opposing gear to all work in the same direction.
PS: Question for Phil: Can your harpist wife help source harp tuners? On my harpguitars.net forum, folks were struggling, as Betty Truitt was mysteriously AWOL for some time. Back in business? Other options? (Benoit Meulle-Stef gets some nice ones in Europe, but they're larger.)

Last edited by Gregg Miner; 10-21-2017 at 01:03 PM.
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  #20  
Old 10-21-2017, 12:58 PM
Gregg Miner Gregg Miner is offline
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Originally Posted by Carbonius View Post
I think my only concern with the Timberline Harp guitar is the 24.9 scale length.
Speaking of production harp guitars whatever happened to Holloway?
As I mentioned earlier, I don't consider these "short scale" - here is short scale: http://harpguitars.net/luthiers/shortscale.htm

They don't feel any different to me - only the width does (I play Knuts, Dyers and Merrills closer to 2" wide nuts).

Yes, the scale is Timeberline's (Rob's) thing. I decided from the get-go that I wanted to produce a Timberline harp guitar, not a "Gregg Miner harp guitar" built by his factory. Saved us much time and money.

In answer to your other question, "Holloway" is now the Dyer Co. (newly trademarked). Which is mostly Jim Worland these days - he had his Dyers at the Gathering along with his Klein electrics built for Steve. (Scott Holloway didn't come down.) They are pro instruments built in Pasadena by Jim.
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  #21  
Old 10-21-2017, 04:06 PM
Carbonius Carbonius is offline
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Thanks Greg. Your detailed replies really help to fill in the gaps. I am a details kind of guy. In fact, I tend to read the whole owner's manual and piles of other info before I make most purchase. So I greatly appreciate the information from your many years of experience.

I'm used to the guitar realm where 24.875 (24 7/8) is called short scale for both Rainsong and Taylor Guitars. I do like what it does to warm things up. I'm very happy that it isn't 12 fret which is what I always see with that scale. This is been my hindernce in buyng a short scale guitar in the past. This scale plus the all Mahogany body should make for a warm clear tone.

For targeting the steel string guitar market, a 1 3/4 nut width is great. I could see how that could be hard for some, especially classical players. That difference could really cram things up. I have a very hard time with a 1 11/16 nut. Too crammed and I end up selling the guitar over just 1/16. A 1 7/8 may be a perfect middle ground, but I'm guessing production wise the standard width works better for Timberline, as their other guitars have it.

Our winters can get brutal here, so I may wait until late winter to order for spring delivery. We normally get into the -20F to -40F range for a while around December/January. Many people have had their guitars finish check or even the crack when shipped in these temps. That may have more to do with shippers throwing around the box while it's cold, but that's the way they roll.

Last edited by Carbonius; 10-22-2017 at 12:31 AM.
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  #22  
Old 10-22-2017, 08:53 AM
philjs philjs is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregg Miner View Post
Question for Phil: Can your harpist wife help source harp tuners? On my harpguitars.net forum, folks were struggling, as Betty Truitt was mysteriously AWOL for some time. Back in business? Other options? (Benoit Meulle-Stef gets some nice ones in Europe, but they're larger.)
I've never bought or installed sharping levers (both of my spouse's harps came with full sets of levers, Lovelands on one and Truitts on the other) so haven't the foggiest notion of where to buy them. I've taken the proverbial bull by the horns, however, and have contacted Rees Harps about their own brand of levers which appear to be a close doppelganger to Truitts. I'll let you know what I find out.

If I might ask, what are the string gauges, and what tuners is Rob using, for the sub-bass strings? I think knowing the height of the tuner post holes, and so how many wraps of the strings are necessary to use, above the head will be critical information.

Phil
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Last edited by Kerbie; 10-25-2017 at 12:20 PM.
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  #23  
Old 10-22-2017, 09:16 AM
philjs philjs is online now
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Originally Posted by Carbonius View Post
I think my only concern with the Timberline Harp guitar is the 24.9 scale length. I tend to run a 56 E string on a 25.5 scale length (light top medium bottom) so I'm a little concerned.
I'm a DADGAD player that uses medium gauge strings (013, 017, 056) for the down-tuned strings and light gauge (024, 032, 042) for the "standard-tuned" strings. Personally I don't consider or characterize 24.9" as "short scale." I'm pretty sure that most of the Seagull/Godin line uses a 24.9" scale, at least the ones that I have played, and I had no issues with them.

When the distance, on a 25.5" scale acoustic, between the nut and the 2nd fret (ie. a whole tone) is 2.78" then a scale length shortened by only 0.5" to 0.6" seems to me to be pretty inconsequential. If players like Larry Pattis, who plays real short-scale guitars (24" as I recall, and that 1.5" shorter scale is more than the distance between the nut and first fret on a 25.5" scale) doesn't have any issues with DADGAD then I'm not expecting any!

Phil
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  #24  
Old 10-22-2017, 03:25 PM
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I understood that Larry Pattis switched to a 24" scale length out of need due to shoulder issues or something like that. As such he's probably made at work because he had to. I tried to find the info but he's made over 11,000 posts here and it's just too much to look through. I did find one interesting statement from him though in this context. His personal opinion is that anything shorter than 25.4 is a short scale.

Apparently standard scale has switched over time. 24.9 used to be the standard with anything longer being "long scale." Now the most common standard is 25.5. Even Seagull has moved many of their guitars to 25.5 (they're standard used to be 24.84 across the line). Kevin Ryan's standard scale is 25.7 and then we have all sorts of people that are moving too many different fan fret scales to get the best of both worlds. In the end it all comes down to what works for you I guess.
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  #25  
Old 10-23-2017, 11:04 AM
Carbonius Carbonius is offline
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Let's through this in the mix... 2 sharping levers on each sub string!! I haven't seen this anywhere else in all the photos and videos I've looked at. Certainly not for those looking to dabble! Quite rare I guess.

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  #26  
Old 10-23-2017, 08:51 PM
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Great to hear about the Timberline option!

FWIW re. sharping levers: Kathy Wingert talked me into adding them to my HG, and TBH I don't use them. I'm pretty well used to doing lots of things at once with my hands, and I just can't imagine ever using them mid-song (though I do have a couple of tunes where I retune a guitar string mid-song). Maybe it's because my Wingert is huge and I couldn't reach the levers, I don't know. But playing the HG properly is hard enough as it is and I don't think it's realistic to plan on using the levers in the middle of a performance. But YMMV and I'd love to be wrong about this
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  #27  
Old 10-24-2017, 08:38 AM
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I watched Muriel Anderson use them mid-song at a concert last year, many times, it was quite remarkable. Me, I'd retune the next string over instead.
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  #28  
Old 10-27-2017, 07:33 PM
Gregg Miner Gregg Miner is offline
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Great to hear about the Timberline option!
Hey all - heading off to the Marketplace section to post there...

You can follow up on certain things here, business stuff there. And of course, I'm only an email away!
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  #29  
Old 10-28-2017, 01:28 AM
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I watched Muriel Anderson use them mid-song at a concert last year, many times, it was quite remarkable. Me, I'd retune the next string over instead.
Well, she's Muriel Anderson.
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  #30  
Old 10-28-2017, 09:55 AM
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Im a fan of a 24.9 scale with a 1.75 nut!
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